For those of you who may be aware, we are in the month of Ramadan. For those who are not sure what Ramadan is, it is the most spiritual month of the year for those who follow the Islamic faith and is a time of abstinence from food, a time for reflection and contemplation and an opportunity gain balance and perspective.
For me personally I love Ramadan because it focus’s deeply on family time and spending quality time with those that matter. People are more kind, loving and very giving. The faith teaches us to be kind to our family, friends and neighbours, to treat those around us with love and respect and to be tolerant. Sadly in today’s society those values seem to be disassociated with the beauty of the faith because of selfish actions of others. Many of us are so busy with our careers, studying, travelling and the general fast pace of life that we don’t get much time to reflect and gain that perspective that we all need. That is why personally for me Ramadan is so valuable. Many think it’s just about abstaining from food, sure this is a large part, no drinking or eating between sunrise and sunset (yes as my colleagues always ask me, not even water!). We in the UK have some of the longest hours in the world, a long 20 hours! Every year Ramadan moves forward by 10 days, this is a wonderful thing because that way you get to experience the beauty of this month in ever season and for both short and long hours. It seems hard but it is very refreshing on the soul.
Try and do something this Ramadan and keep it going for the rest of the year. Visit your elderly neighbours, take a fruit basket and spend some time with them. I see many elderly people in and around where I live and many have no friends or family and have to be totally independent, it’s so heart breaking. There is one lady who I visit when I can although I guiltily admit I should visit her more often and just seeing how much she values myself or my family coming and spending time with her is really moving, its nothing for us but for her it means the world. Volunteer at a soup kitchen or cook some extra food and give it to the homeless. Such good acts which come naturally during Ramadan should be carried on for the rest of the year!
For those who have never heard about Ramadan I have listed a couple of facts below about why this month is so important to many.
1. Fasting during Ramadan is one of the five pillars of Islam
2. Ramadan, the ninth month on the Muslim calendar
3. During Ramadan, observers are expected to abstain from food, drink, and other pleasures from dawn to dusk. Removing these comforts from daily routine is intended to focus the mind on prayer, spirituality, and charity and to purify the body and mind.
4. Several different groups are excused from fasting during Ramadan; pregnant women,children, menstruating women, people who are mentally or physically ill, and sometimes women who are breastfeeding.
5. Muslims are obliged to give charity on a regular basis in the form of either Zakat, which is mandatory giving, or Sadaqa, which is voluntary and meant to go beyond the mere religious obligations. During Ramadan, the rewards of charity are considered greater. As a result, many Muslims will choose to give more during the month.
6. The end of Ramadan is marked by Eid ul Fitr, a large festival to celebrate the end of the fast. The celebration begins as soon as the new moon is sighted in the sky.
Have a great week x
Samia is a co-founder and development director of Hijablicious. She will be regularly posting her outfits and sharing her love for fashion.View all Samia posts.